- The Washington Times - Friday, October 31, 2014

Fox News host Bill O’Reilly said in a back-and-forth televised discussion with fellow talk show host Tavis Smiley that Republicans by and large are afraid to reach out to the black community because they don’t want to be labeled racist.

Mr. Smiley said Democrats have been taking black voters for granted, but Republicans are basically ignoring their needs altogether.

Mr. O’Reilly agreed the GOP seemed a bit apathetic toward blacks, but said it’s because Republicans are “afraid.”

“The white Republican power structure is afraid of black Americans,” he said, Mediaite reported. “They don’t know how to treat them — they don’t know how to speak to them, they don’t know anything about the culture, and they don’t want to be called a racist bigot, so they stay away.”

Mr. O’Reilly didn’t agree with Mr. Smiley about the so-called privileges whites get over blacks, simply because of skin color.

Mr. Smiley first said that “the less melanin in your skin,” the better chances for success in life. But Mr. O’Reilly disagreed and said many of the problems with the black community stem from family issues and the prevalence of single-parent homes.

• Cheryl K. Chumley can be reached at cchumley@washingtontimes.com.

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